These decadent chocolate cupcakes are super moist, soft and fudgy. They are topped with a whipped chocolate ganache for a silky-smooth finish. This one-bowl recipe is just as easy as using a cake mix and tastes even better.

A chocolate cupcake topped with chocolate ganache frosting and a blackberry.

Best chocolate cupcakes ever!

These chocolate cupcakes are absolute perfection! The cupcakes taste like a chocolate fudge cake. They’re soft, moist and intensely chocolaty. The frosting is smooth and creamy with just the right amount of bold chocolate flavor. These cupcakes are the ultimate chocolate lover’s dream.

Chocolate cupcakes topped with chocolate ganache frosting and blackberries.

Why this recipe is so great:

  • All made in one bowl with everyday simple ingredients – Like a cake mix, you simply add all your wet ingredients to your dry mixture in one bowl, mix, pour and bake. It’s as easy as that.
  • Tastes better than a box mix – These chocolate cupcakes are not overly sweet like store-bought cake mixes. The taste is authentic and not processed as with most mixes because of all the extra additives and leavening agents.
  • Best chocolate frosting and made with just 2 ingredients – This chocolate ganache frosting is made with just chocolate and heavy cream. It’s whipped to make it light and airy like a chocolate mousse. It’s much more flavorful than chocolate buttercream because it has a higher chocolate content and the texture is smoother.

How to make chocolate cupcakes:

A picture collage of how to make chocolate cupcakes.

  1. First, preheat your oven to 350F. Then toss together the flour, granulated sugar, unsweetened cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl.
  2. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture. Add in the milk, vegetable oil, egg, vanilla extract, and coffee.
  3. Whisk all together until smooth.
  4. Divide the batter into 15 cupcake liners (so you’ll need two muffin tins). Place the baking pans in the oven, reduce the heat to 325F and bake for 20 minutes.

Expert tips and substitutions:

  • Unsweetened cocoa powder – You can use natural or Dutch-processed unsweetened cocoa powder. I prefer Dutch-processed because it’s darker and more flavorful.
  • Sift the cocoa powder – If your cocoa powder is lumpy, make sure to sift it before you add it in with the rest of the dry ingredients or else you might end up with dry clumps of cocoa powder in your cupcakes.
  • Coffee – You can’t taste the coffee in the cupcakes. It’s simply added to enhance and deepen the chocolate flavor. You can use decaf coffee or replace it with more milk if you prefer.
  • Baking temperature – These cupcakes are baked in an oven that has been preheated to 350F then reduced to 325F. The initial high temperature gives the leavening agents a quick boost, and then baking them at a lower temperature gives a more even bake.

FAQ:

  • How much batter do you put in a cupcake? – Anywhere from 1/2 – 3/4 full depending on the recipe. For this recipe, the batter rises quite a bit, so do not fill more than just half full.
  • What makes a cupcake moist?  Fat content – the higher the fat, the moister the cupcake. Oil is 100% fat while most store-bought kinds of butter are around 80% fat. So using oil will produce a more moist and tender cupcake. It also won’t dry out as fast as butter baked goods.
  • How to store chocolate cupcakes – Store the cupcakes in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Place on the counter for about an hour to bring to room temperature before serving.
  • How to freeze chocolate cupcakes – You can freeze the cupcakes frosted or unfrosted. Place the cupcakes in a freezer-friendly container and store them in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge and place on the counter for 1  hour to bring to room temperature before serving.

A half eaten easy moist chocolate cupcake topped with chocolate ganache.

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Easy Moist Chocolate Cupcakes


  • Author: Lily Ernst
  • Prep Time: 30 min
  • Cook Time: 25 min
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 15 cupcakes

Description

These decadent chocolate cupcakes are super moist, soft and fudgy. They are topped with a whipped chocolate ganache for a silky-smooth finish. This one-bowl recipe is just as easy as using a cake mix and tastes even better.


Ingredients

Cupcakes

  • 1 cup (125g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
  • ½ cup (50g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup (120ml) milk
  • ¼ cup (60ml) vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ cup (120ml) coffee cooled

Whipped Chocolate Ganache Frosting

  • 1 cup (240ml) whipping cream
  • 1 ¼ cup (8oz) good quality semi-sweet chocolate chips (see notes below*)

Instructions

Cupcakes

  • Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare two muffin tins with 15 cupcake liners.
  • In a large bowl, toss together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  • Make a well in the center of the dry mixture. Add in the milk, vegetable oil, egg, vanilla and coffee. Whisk all together until smooth.
  • Divide the batter evenly into the 15 cupcake liners. It will fill just a little over half full. Place the baking pans in the oven, reduce the heat to 325F and bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool completely before frosting.

Frosting

  1. Place the chocolate chip in a large heat-proof glass bowl and set aside.
  2. Pour the whipping cream into a small saucepan and place on the stovetop over medium heat. Bring the cream to a gentle simmer.
  3. Pour the hot cream on top of the chocolate chips and let it steep for 5 minutes without stirring.
  4. Slowly whisk the cream and melted chocolate together until combined and smooth.
  5. Place in the fridge for one hour to thicken.
  6. Beat the chocolate ganache on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Pipe onto the cupcakes as desired. I used a Wilton 2D piping tip.

Notes

*Use good-quality chocolate chips like Hershey’s or Ghirardelli brand. They melt better and tastes better as well.

  • Unsweetened cocoa powder – You can use natural or Dutch-processed unsweetened cocoa powder. I prefer Dutch-processed because it’s darker and more flavorful.
  • Sift the cocoa powder – If your cocoa powder is lumpy, make sure to sift it before you add it in with the rest of the dry ingredients or else you might end up with dry clumps of cocoa powder in your cupcakes.
  • Coffee – You can’t taste the coffee in the cupcakes. It’s simply added to enhance and deepen the chocolate flavor. You can use decaf coffee or replace it with more milk if you prefer.
  • How to store chocolate cupcakes – Store the cupcakes in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Place on the counter for about an hour to bring to room temperature before serving.
  • How to freeze chocolate cupcakes – You can freeze the cupcakes frosted or unfrosted. Place the cupcakes in a freezer-friendly container and store them in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge and place on the counter for 1  hour to bring to room temperature before serving.
  • Category: dessert
  • Method: bake
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: chocolate cupcake recipe, easy chocolate cupcakes, moist chocolate cupcakes

This cupcake recipe is from Café Sucre. I met the lovely Chris and her husband Scott at a conference last year. They are one of the sweetest couples I’ve ever met. And if you like decorated cookies, you have to take a look at her blog. Chris makes the most beautiful decorated cookies and she makes it look so easy.

Frosting recipe by Little Sweet Baker.

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